A Memory of Grandma

“A Memory of Grandma”, a copyrighted post, was written for my WordPress blog called Always Growing by Jan in Covington, Louisiana 


Pink is many people’s favorite flower color.  When I first started making a garden on the north side of our house there already were some pinkish azaleas there, and so to keep from clashing with those plant when they were in bloom, I made sure to keep all new flowering plants in the pink tones.  Now, just about everything in that section is pink with a few purple tones to alleviate any monotony.

The pink cashmere bouquet (clerondendrum bungei) has started blooming in the “pink” garden.  They carry out the big, round flower head theme that the hydrangeas started a few weeks ago.


Cashmere Bouquet (redu)


These used to be more common in gardens, but I guess now are considered an old-fashioned plant.  Many people find these can be invasive, but I do not have that problem.  It does spread, but not as bad as I have read it does.  I just pull out any new plants that pop up that are not wanted.  I have transplanted several of these to other areas of the garden.

One of the things I like about cashmere bouquet is the flower’s fragrance.  There used to be a powder called “Cashmere Bouquet” that my maternal grandmother used to wear when I was a child.  To combat the summer heat, the ladies at that time would take a bath in the mid afternoon and use powder liberally afterwards.  These flowers smell exactly like that powder, and the aroma always brings back memories of summer time and my grandmother.


Cashmere Bouquet II (redu)


These deciduous plants are lovely summer flowers that go well in our “pink” garden, are bloomers all summer long, and are great at calling to mind very pleasant memories.  What more could one ask for in a perennial?


  1. Janet said,

    May 26, 2009 at 6:13 am

    Very pretty bloom. Looks like a pink allium bloom. Love the fact that it is fragrant.

    • Jan said,

      May 29, 2009 at 10:07 am

      Janet, it is a lovely sight and smell when several of these are blooming at one time.

  2. linnie said,

    May 26, 2009 at 6:46 am

    Lovely post Jan. I really enjoy your blog. I wanted to ask you if you know why I cannot access your blog from the popular page since the new update on Blotanical. I cannot access any blog from that page. I can access you by clicking on you on the first page in the section for most visited. Just wondering.

    Linnie in Destrehan, LA 5/26/09

    • Jan said,

      May 29, 2009 at 10:10 am

      Thanks, Linnie, for the kind words about my blog. Stuart seems to have fixed the problem now, because I am no longer having trouble getting the blogs on Blotanical’s pages. Sorry I didn’t respond sooner, but I am just starting to feel better after several days of being under the weather.

  3. Jean said,

    May 26, 2009 at 7:08 am

    I remember Cashmere Bouquet powder but didn’t realize this plant smelled like that. I’ve never seen the plant sold, only as a pass along. Will have to keep my eyes peeled to older gardens.

    • Jan said,

      May 29, 2009 at 10:15 am

      Jean, I wonder if the powder was named after the plant? It is true you rarely see it sold, though I have seen it offered on the internet. Luckily, I got mine from a friend.

  4. Garden tips said,

    May 26, 2009 at 1:20 pm

    Pink is a lovely colour in the garden. I have several plants which remind me of my childhood. That is what is so great about gardening

    • Jan said,

      May 29, 2009 at 10:17 am

      I couldn’t agree more. As I have gotten older, it seems that I plant more and more things that were popular in relatives’ gardens when I was a child. I like remembering them and their gardens.

  5. fairegarden said,

    May 26, 2009 at 3:41 pm

    Hi Jan, what a beautiful flower! It is new to me and the name conjures memories of a soap by that name too. We used it as the base to decorate for guest soap in my girl scout troop when I was a child. I believe we stuck sequins into it with small pins! No one was supposed to use the soap, merely a decoration. Seems ridiculous now. HA

    • Jan said,

      May 29, 2009 at 10:19 am

      Frances, that is the same cashmere bouquet that I remember. There was a soap, too. Even though you couldn’t use your decorated soap, I bet it smelled good.

  6. May 26, 2009 at 4:12 pm

    Pink is my favorite color and this looks yummy. Love the fact that is smells good too. I remember Cashmere Bouquet like it was yesterday–and Noxema. Little old ladies all used that too. I love it.

    • Jan said,

      May 29, 2009 at 10:20 am

      Anna, you are right about the Noxema; I had forgotten about that. I wonder if Cashmere Bouquet was a Southern thing?

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